Two-and-a-bit years ago, after my son was born, I quit work and became a stay-at-home dad. It made a sort of sense, in that my wife was making a good deal more money than I was. We could afford me to quit before we could afford her to quit.
Two-and-a-bit years ago, it seemed like a good idea, although in hindsight, I think it was probably the worst possible thing I could have done, something I’m only just realizing as I reassemble myself, and my ability to think and write. (Certainly, my ability to socialize in a lot of situations has disappeared entirely, a trait probably shared by most stay-at-home parents at some point).
Two-and-a-bit years on, I think that was the dumbest thing I could have done, quitting. Not least because, er, two and a bit years on…the economy isn’t even in the toilet, so much as flushed and somewhere in the sewer pipes.
There are no jobs.
It’s amazing. We just came out of seasonal-work, er, season, and even my local Mall, who usually hires scads of people…I think I saw one hiring sign. Maybe two.
No one’s hiring. I take dim comfort in knowing that I’m not the only one who can’t find a job. (And we could really use me to find a job. We need the money. And I could use to not be in the house every day.)
I take less-than-dim…actually, no comfort whatsoever in the government’s broken-record jabber about how any day now, the economy is going to be Just Fine Thanks, and they’re going to Stimulate it. Worst stimulation ever. If the government were a prostitute, she wouldn’t get very much work.
(Um. Worst metaphor ever.)
I mention all of this because I just saw this article, and was grumbling. Normally, I don’t read the news. And even on the rare lapsing moments when I do, I don’t care to talk about it.
Lots of people talk about the economy problem, and I’m not about to join them. One can turn on a news network and get your fill of that. But still. Grumble.
I’ve just watched Iron Maiden’s documentary, Flight 666. I already adore Iron Maiden, but that was fantastic. What a level-headed bunch of guys. The music is the thing to them. There are no diva-like moments, no strange moments of rock star excess. They did a brutal tour, flying to some previously unreachable places aboard their own 757 — named Ed Force One — and flown by lead singer Bruce Dickinson.
I love rock documentaries. I enjoyed the Metallica documentary Some Kind of Monster, which showed the creation of St. Anger. Since that was a train wreck disaster of an album, it was interesting to watch it being made. For one thing, you can sort of see why it was a failure.
Even just comparing the attitudes of the Metallica guys with the Iron Maiden guys, there’s such a huge difference. And while I like Metallica a great deal (and I thought Death Magnetic was terrific and got them firmly back on track), Iron Maiden is just something else. Awe-inspiring.
Me-as-a-writer is about 50% influenced by the writers I love…and about 50% influenced by the musicians I love. I would love to figure out how to be the writerly equivalent of Alice Cooper, or Iron Maiden, or Ronnie James Dio.
What does that mean?
Beats me. I’m still thinking about it.
And speaking of writing, I’d best go work on that short story some more. My wife had three days off — today being her first day back at work — and I really, really adore her getting time off. I miss her terribly when she works. But the only downside is, I don’t tend to write on her days off. (There’s time for me to do it, and I could, but I mostly don’t). The result is, it always takes me a day or so to get back in the groove and really working again.
I’d rather get thrown out of the groove and get to spend a few days with her, than to remain firmly in-the-groove and never get to see her, though. Make no mistake about that one.
Tonight, I think, will be when I start on next week’s article for SF Signal. Want to get it on the books a little early, since school starts up next week. First weeks are always easy, sure, but I’m trying to build a routine with SF Signal, and don’t want to miss it.
My review of “Duma Key” by Stephen King should be going up there soon. Sometime today, I think (I can’t remember, actually). When it does, I’ll link to it here.
Okay, for reals, I am going to work now.
Stay warm. Unless it’s blisteringly hot where you are, gentle reader, which case…stay cool.
(and go listen to some Iron Maiden, whydontcha)